Analyzing data from more than 2,500 women who became mothers between 1978 and 1995, researchers from Pennsylvania State University and University of Akron found that moms who work full-time are healthier than those who stay home or work part-time.
Checking in at age 40, and controlling for things like pre-pregnancy employment, marital status race, pre-existing health problems and other factors, the study found that moms who went back to work not long after having kids reported more energy and mobility, and were less likely to be depressed.
"Work is good for your health, both mentally and physically. It gives women a sense of purpose, self-efficacy, control and autonomy. They have a place where they are an expert on something, and they're paid a wage," study author Adrianne Frech, an assistant sociology professor, said in an American Sociological Association news release.
Researchers think the medical benefits and financial stability that come with full-time work contribute to a woman’s overall health. Unemployed moms who keep dropping out of the work force, often not by choice, reported the most health problems, suggesting the stress of not being in control of your career can really take its toll.
How do you think working--or not working--has affected your health? Leave a comment.